How to Get That Radio Voice Effect with GarageBand

by Matt GerrardUpdated September 22, 2017

Garageband is a multitrack audio recording application included with Mac OS-X. It's an entry-level program with a fairly basic feature set, but it's designed to be easy to use for those not familiar with audio production software. Digital effects are simple to apply to recorded audio, and can be used to create a variety of novel sounds, such as the crackling, distorted, "Old-Time Radio" sound that can give character and context to your recordings.

Launch GarageBand and create a new project at the splash screen on start-up. Otherwise, select "Open Existing Project" in the lower right hand corner of the window.

Create a new track by pressing "Alt-Command" and "N." In the pop up window, select "Real Instrument" and click "OK."

Record your vocal part, or drag and drop an audio file onto the arrange window next to the newly created track.

Click the "i" button at the lower right corner of the arrange window to open the track properties window. The top half of the window will display the available effect presets. The lower half shows the track properties, allowing you to fine tune the parameters of the presets, or create your own from scratch.

Click on the "Vocals" category on the left of the presets window. This will open the expanded list of available Vocal presets. Double-click "Radio Effect" from the bottom of the list. You can adjust the specific settings of the preset by using the effect sliders in the lower half of the window.


About the Author

Matt Gerrard began writing in 2002, initially contributing articles about college student culture to "The Gateway" magazine, many of which were republished on the now-defunct Plinth blog. Since then, Gerrard has worked as a technician for musicians, educators, chemists and engineers. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in music technology from DeMontfort University.

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